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Gastrointestinal Disease and Pregnancya 

Gastrointestinal Disease and Pregnancya
Chapter:
Gastrointestinal Disease and Pregnancya
Author(s):

Sunanda V. Kane

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199373338.003.0025
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date: 18 February 2020

Pharmacotherapy for the management of common gastrointestinal illnesses has evolved remarkably in the last 10 years. Women with chronic illnesses who would have been unwilling or unable to conceive in the past are now healthy enough to consider pregnancy. In addition, many women are deferring childbearing until later in life, when polypharmacy and illness may be more common. This chapter discusses the use of medications during pregnancy, based on the best available evidence. Because the amount of high-quality controlled data in pregnancy is limited, absolute safety is not guaranteed for any medication. Instead, the risk of the underlying condition versus the safety of the medications used to treat it should be balanced against the overall health of the mother and the fetus in each case. All conversations about medications should be documented carefully, along with possible consequences of not treating the disease during pregnancy.

Communication with the patient's obstetrician during this time is also paramount.

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